Multi-IF-over-fiber transmission using a commercial TOSA for analog fronthaul networks aiming beyond 5G

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2021

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Opt Express

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1094-4087

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An IF-over-fiber (IFoF)-based analog transport technology for mobile fronthaul applications has recently attracted significant attention. However, most previous studies have employed discrete optical components. For the analog transport technology to be a more cost-effective and power-efficient solution, it is necessary to utilize existing integrated optical transceivers. In this paper, we demonstrate IFoF transmission using a commercial off-the-shelf transmitter optical sub-assembly (TOSA). Although the TOSA was developed for a digital system employing non-return-to-zero (NRZ) signals, we show that it is also possible for the TOSA to support high-capacity analog transmission. As a demonstration, by using the TOSA, we could successfully transmit 64- and 256-ary quadrature-amplitude-modulated (64/256QAM) orthogonal-frequency-division-multiplexed (OFDM) signals with net bit rates of 54.74 and 36.49 Gbps per wavelength, respectively. Since the TOSA has four wavelength channels, the total capacities are 218.94 and 145.98 Gbps, respectively. To the best of our knowledge, these rates are the highest among all the demonstrations using analog transport technology.

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